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Android Studio – How to copy a project?

Posted by: admin April 23, 2020 Leave a comment


Alright, I’ve done some searching and seem to be coming close to the answer I’m looking for. But for fear of messing something up with my current project (I’m a first time app developer and I’m quite pleased so far… I’d like to stay that way), I’m looking for a nice and clear step by step on how to copy a project. I know some things in certain places need to be imported/renamed but I’m not sure exactly what/where.

So, is there a good step by step on how to do this or am I missing it? If not, can someone explain it to me in detail?

EDIT: I want to copy one app project to make another app project that’s very similar. I’m using Android Studio for my apps. I want to be able to use one app to make another that’s just like it (with differences of course). So instead of making a new project and making all the xml/java files and adding all the images, etc. I want to be able to use what I already have and duplicate it to make another app that’s totally separate from the original. I’m not using Eclipse at all, I’m using Android Studio for my apps.

How to&Answers:

I’m a newcomer to Android and AndroidStudio (AS) and I’ve laboured for many hours trying to use AS to ‘clone’ a project. Many thanks for the existing answers given above that set me on the right path. For any total newbie’s, like myself, the following detailed step-by-step instructions should prove useful:

  1. Using Windows Explorer, navigate to the Android Studio projects
    directory select the project folder to be cloned;

  2. Copy the selected folder;

  3. Paste the folder into the Android Studio (AS) projects directory;

  4. Rename the pasted folder to be the new name of the cloned project,
    say ‘ViewPager_Shell’;

  5. Launch Android Studio;

  6. Select ‘Open an existing Android Studio project’;

  7. Navigate to the AS projects directory;

  8. Select the folder ‘ViewPager_Shell’;

  9. Ensure that AS’s explorer pane is visible on the left-hand-side of
    the AS main frame;

  10. Select the ‘Android’ view for the explorer pane;

  11. Open app -> java; the old package name should now be visible, e.g.

  12. Right-click on the old package name and select ‘Refactor ->

  13. A dialog should now appear; left-click ‘Rename Package’;

  14. In the pop-up dialog, replace the old package (e.g. ‘owm’) with the
    new package name (e.g. viewpager_shell);

  15. Left-click on the ‘Refactor’ button; BEWARE!! … A new ‘Find
    Factoring Preview’ pane should open in the lower-left of the AS
    main frame window;

  16. Select ‘Do Refactor’;

  17. Using the AS explorer pane, navigate to ‘Gradle Scripts ->

  18. Double-click build.gradle(Module:app) to view its contents in the
    AS editor pane;

  19. Change the defaultConfig ‘applicationID’ string to your new full
    package path (e.g. “com.hulme.viewpager_shell”);

  20. Using the AS explorer pane, navigate to ‘app -> manifests ->

  21. Double-click on ‘AndroidManifest.xml’ to view it in the AS editor

  22. Under the manifest tag, you should observe that the new package
    name (e.g. ‘com.hulme.viewpager_shell’) now appears, as a result
    of the previous refactoring step;

  23. Under application tag, change android:label to a new name (e.g.
    “ViewPager Shell Demo”) – this is the name that appears in the list
    of installed apps provided by Android’s ‘Settings -> Application

  24. Under activity tag, change android:label to a new name (e.g. “VP
    Shell”) – this is the name that appears under the app’s icon and it
    is also the activity’s default ActionBar title;

  25. You should now be able to build and run the newly cloned project.


To achieve your objective follow the below steps:

  1. Close the existing project by navigating to File-> Close.
  2. Find out your Android Studio workspace path and Navigate to that path.
  3. In that directory you will have this project. Make a new folder and copy the contents of this folder to that new folder.
    Copy the existing and project folder and paste it where ever you want and then rename it.

  4. Go to Android Studio, select Import Existing project, select the new folder from the path you have stored it.

This must be sufficient to achieve your objective. Hope this might help you.


(Tested multiple times as of version 2.3.3)

  1. Close Android Studio
  2. Navigate to projects directory and find the project folder you wish to replace
  3. Copy the project folder, paste in the same directory and rename (no spaces)
  4. Open Android Studio, opening copied/new project
  5. If prompted to remove Gradle import from the project, leave checked and click ok.
  6. Under app, res, values, open strings.xml and update the app name. You will likely come back here to edit further strings to fit your new app.

    1. In MainActivity.java, highlight the part of the package name that needs to be changed (usually the last part after the period, e. g. in the package net.androidbootcamp.concerttickets you would select concerttickets).

    2. Right-click on selection and choose refactor, then rename.

    3. When prompted to rename package or rename directory, first choose rename directory, leave comments checked and proceed.

    4. Be patient until the bottom left corner says “[n] occurrences changed”.

    5. Repeat steps 8-10, but this time choose rename package, then check both boxes (comments and text occurrences), and proceed.

    6. It will give you a refactor preview at the bottom, click “Do Refactor”.

    7. Click the synchronize button (Ctrl+Alt+Y).

    8. Select build, clean project.

    9. Use project search and replace to double check your package names. My experience has been without issue but this is just in case. After refactoring, you may also notice that the full package name now displays as a prefix for resources in the code, for example, “net.androidbootcamp.concerttickets.R.id…” instead of just “R.id…” Either is fine but this can be quickly remedied with search and replace, as needed, for readability. If you perform this step, select build and clean project, afterward.

    10. Run app to test before modifying further.

NOTE: You may need to re-select your theme for your (internal) emulator or make other similar environment-specific changes.


The easiest way to copy a project in Android Studio is,

  1. First save or run your current project.(Think you are currently running a app called “ClientAppOne”).When you are running your app it will automatically saves the changes you made to it.
  2. Then go to the folder where the file is in.(Assume you have saved it in the Documents folder.”ClientAppOne” will show as another sub folder inside the Document Folder)
  3. Copy it and paste in your desired folder(Assume again you want to sabe new application in Document folder).
  4. It will show another folder as “ClientAppOnecopy” so,rename it as “ClientAppTwo”(rename as your desired name)
  5. From Android Studio,go to File->Open->then select the Document and select ClientAppTwo folder.
  6. Then project will load on the Android Studio screen.
  7. Select the “com.example.clientappone” under the Java folder.
  8. Right click and select Refactor->Rename->Rename package->then add “ClientAppTwo” ->If you want you can do the preview by clicking “Do Prieview” -> click “Do Refactor”
  9. Then when you are running it,it won’t create another application file as ClientAppTwo.This app also running as the same app called ClientAppOne.So for that you have to change the gradle file of ClientAppTwo As –changing Gradle

here we have to select the build.gradle(Module.app).Then in here we have to change the applicationId as: applicationId “org.sliit.clientapptwo”

“org.sliit.clientapptwo” is my package name.

This will help you 🙂

(note:here I used “ClientAppOne” and “ClientAppTwo”used for demonstrations only)


I have successfully used Andrew’s answer above (with the 25 steps). But it has failed a few times. Each time it failed, I was able to fix the cloning process by adding a step 0

Step 0:
Before attempting to clone a project, do a >Build> Clean Project on the project to be cloned. Projects sometimes accumulate junk that is missed by the refactoring. At least that’s my interpretation of the error messages. 🙂


I’m a newcomer to Android stuff, but this somewhat crude process worked fine for me:

In Android Studio:

  1. Create a new empty project.
  2. Go into the project you want to clone.
  3. In the Project structure, select all your Java class files – except for MainActivity (use click, then up-arrow with click to select them all in one go), and copy them to the clipboard .
  4. Go into your new Project, and paste the java class files into the appropriate folder. Any reference to PACKAGE NAME is AUTOMATICALLY UPDATED.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for everything else (drawables , XML layouts etc).
  6. Copy and paste MainActivity source code from old project to your new one(manually change the package name).
  7. You may have to do a few more manual changes (eg if you tag any class names in XML).
  8. For the Manifest, copy and paste the contents again, and then manually change the package name.
  9. This should be ready to build.


I find the other suggested solutions too complicated. This is how I do it.

In Android Studio I select the project folder in the project view, right click it, select “Refactor” and “Copy…” (or just press F5). In the dialog I just give the copy a new project name and select a new folder.

In order to select the project folder you first have to make sure the project view shows the entire project, not just the “App”.

That’s it! Just one single step. No need to use File explorer or Finder to copy files. Android Studio copies all the files into the new folder and makes the necessary refactoring.

I don’t know if this is a new feature i Android Studio or if there are other issues with this way of doing it. However I quite often use this method to create copies of projects as “forks” in order to try out different ways to solve a problem without changing the original project and it seems to work fine.


I’ve come across this question periodically because I’ve always wanted to be able to quickly accomplish what you’re asking – completely copy a project to a new one and be able to go back and run the old version. I never tried any of the answers with the ridiculous number of steps because I was always concerned I would miss some hardcoded path and I would end up corrupting my primary copy.

My Answer:

I figured out after doing work with Android libraries that Android Studio pretty much treats an app the same as a library. They’re both modules. So you can create a new empty project, then go to File -> New -> Import Module and browse to an app from another project. If you want to rename the app, from the Project view, you can right click and select Refactor -> Rename…

Also, Android Studio lets you have multiple apps in the same project. If your purpose is to develop two similar (like paid vs free) apps, you could put a lot of the overlapping functionality into a library and then customize the apps to be slightly different.


I tried a lot of answers written above and found most of them incomplete

                          **Copy the project**

1 On your computer’s file system (not in Android Studio), make a copy of the ExistingProject directory.

2 Rename the copied directory to NewProject.

                **Rename and refactor the project components** 

The old name of the project, ExistingProject, still appears throughout the packages and files in the new copy of your project. Change the file and the package references in your app to the new name, as follows:

1 Start Android Studio

2 Click Open an existing Android Studio project.

3 Navigate to the NewProject directory, select it, and click OK.

4 Select Build > Clean Project to remove the auto-generated files.

5 Click the 1:Project side-tab and choose Android from the drop-down menu to see your files in the Project view.

6 Expand app > java.

7 Right-click com.example.android.existingproject and choose Refactor > Rename. This opens the Rename dialog.

8 Change existingproject to newproject.

9 Check Search in comments and strings and Search for text occurrences and click Refactor.

10 The Find Refactoring Preview pane appears, showing the code to be refactored.

11 Click Do Refactor.

12 Expand res > values and double-click the strings.xml file.

13 Change the name=”app_name” string to New Project.

     **Update the build.gradle and AndroidManifest.xml files**

Each app you create must have a unique application ID, as defined in the app’s build.gradle file. Even though the above steps should have changed the build.gradle file, you should check it to make sure, and also sync the project with the gradle file:

1 Expand Gradle Scripts and double-click build.gradle (Module: app).

2 Under defaultConfig, check to make sure that the value of the applicationID key has been changed to “com.example.android.newproject”. If it has not changed, change it manually now.

3 Click Sync Now in the top right corner of the Android Studio window.

Tip: You can also choose Tools > Android > Sync Project with Gradle File to sync your gradle files.
In addition, some apps include the app name in readable form (such as “New Project” rather than newproject) as a label in the AndroidManifest.xml file.

4 Expand app > manifests and double-click AndroidManifest.xml.
5 Find the statement below, and if necessary, change the label if to the string resource for the new app name: